How to Promote Your Application

Congratulations on the release of your application! It looks great, is easy to use, and functions as intended. It’s not time to rest yet! It can be easy to forget that application development is an ongoing process. Now you need to promote your application and get users. Here are some tips to get your fan base started.

App Distribution

Make your application easy to find. 40% of users discover applications from the app stores. If that’s not a good enough reason to put your app in its platform’s store, I’m not sure what is.

Stand Out in the Crowd

Now that your mobile application is in the corresponding store, it needs to stand out. There are over 4.2 million apps in the stores and that number is increasing all of the time. Take good screenshots that show key features of your application to entice downloads. Take a video. Get familiar with ASO (app store optimization). Be mindful of what keywords you use and how your app is characterized. These help determine how your mobile application is found and displayed.

An important aspect of optimization is testing. Android has enabled A/B testing for store listings so you can experiment and see what works best. iOS currently doesn’t offer anything similar, but there are third party frameworks available.

Make a Microsite or Landing Page

Your app description in the stores only gives your potential users so much information. Create a microsite for your mobile application so that you can really showcase its features and promote it. Point out your users’ pain points and then show how your product solves them. Include images, videos, testimonials, reviews, and anything else you need to entice a user to download your app. Don’t forget to optimize for search engines (SEO)!

Use What You Have

If your application was built to extend features to a current user base such as Target’s discount mobile application, Cartwheel, you’ve got a good user foundation to grow on. Put a QR code on receipts or feature it on your website. Use the framework that already exists and build on it.

If your application is the business, you’re not out of luck. You still have connections and methods of communication you use daily, just like a larger business. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t use email. Add a link to your signature. Tell your friends and family about the project and give them a free download for trying it out and spreading the word. On iOS you can generate 100 promo codes for every version of the app you upload. Android allows up to 500 codes per app, per quarter. Be your own advocate and salesperson!

Social Media

Create social profiles for your app. Then find influencers in your industry and follow them. Mix up your posts. A good rule of thumb is to primarily share tidbits of information and sites that your potential users would like. Sprinkle in your own content and just occasionally add a call to action. Join in discussions and make your application part of the story.


Several social media platforms also offer advertising. Try them out! Facebook and Linkedin both offer the ability to highly target your audience, which will put your ad in front of exactly who you want. AdWords are another option. Google even has a specific campaign type called Mobile App Installs to drive downloads. All include tools to monitor the numbers of views and downloads so you can keep up with your ad’s performance.

Share Your App

Get others to promote your mobile application for you! Share the good news of your application’s release on the wire. Reach out to journalists and bloggers who write for sites your user groups visit. Submit your application to websites that review apps. You could even nominate your application for an award.

Don’t Ignore Your Users

As you gain users, don’t forget to listen to their opinions. Using their feedback and your analytics, you’ll find things that can be improved in your previously “completed” application. It’s normal and all part of the app development cycle.

Enjoy the Journey

Having an amazing mobile application is just the start of your journey. Promote it through the stores, a website, social media, advertising, and leverage the connections you already have.  Find as many ways to get your application in front of as many people as possible.


Need help promoting your app?

Jennifer Pike
Jennifer Pike